Kim Yong Chol, North Korea's lead negotiator in denuclearization talks. Photo: Andrew Harnik/AFP via Getty Images

North Korea's lead negotiator in denuclearization talks with the U.S. arrived in Washington Thursday evening, amid reports that the two sides are seeking to lay the groundwork for a possible second summit between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, CNN reports.

Details: Kim Yong Chol is expected to meet with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and U.S. Special Representative to North Korea Steve Biegun on Friday, according to CNN. His arrival at Washington Dulles Airport comes just hours after Trump unveiled a plan for a new missile defense strategy, which explicitly refers to North Korea as an "extraordinary threat" to the U.S.

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The new buyout barons

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Last month I wrote that SPACs are the new IPOs. But I may have understated it, because SPACs are also becoming the new private equity.

By the numbers: Short for "special purpose acquisition company," SPACs have raised $24 billion so far in 2020, with a loaded pipeline of upcoming offerings. U.S. buyout firms raised nearly $102 billion through the end of June — a much larger amount, but not so much larger that the two can't play on the same field.

3 hours ago - World

Macron visits Beirut promising a "new political pact" for Lebanon

Macron visits the hard-hit Gemmayzeh neighborhood. Photo: AFP via Getty Images

French President Emmanuel Macron walked through the blast-damaged streets of Beirut on Thursday, swarmed by people chanting for the fall of Lebanon's government and pleading for international aid.

Why it matters: Lebanon is at a breaking point. Its economy was collapsing and its government hardly functioning — all before a massive explosion destroyed swathes of the capital city, including its vital port.

3 hours ago - Sports

The PGA Championship is golf's first major in over a year

Photo: Gary Kellner/PGA of America via Getty Images

The 2020 PGA Championship tees off Thursday at San Francisco's TPC Harding Park, which is hosting its first-ever major.

Why it matters: It's the first major in more than a year — and the first of seven majors in the next 12 months. Though there won't be any fans in attendance, the excitement is palpable.